In today's music business it is often hard to weed through the countless hobbyists and fakes that oversaturate the market - the ones that think they have a music career just because garage recordings doctored with Pro-Tools are posted on their MySpace pages. As the internet continues to level the playing field, true artists become harder and harder to find. Occasionally the cream does rise to the top and great talent is recognized. A prime example of this is found in a Unionville , Tennessee country boy by the name of Big Smo.
Brought into the world as John Smith in early 1976, Big Smo was a typical kid from sunny California who loved the wide open night skies and spirit of the wild west. His parents were hard working middle class people with respect for the simple things in life. As fate would have it, they migrated to middle Tennessee in 1981 and took over a small town farm and Smo was given a crash course in country living. Before long his chores consisted of weeding the garden, feeding cows, bush hogging fields, and hauling hay with his father. This strong work ethic and appreciation for living off the land would one day be the backbone of a young artist. Not only was he planting seeds in the family garden, but the seeds of his future destiny as well.
As a teenager Big Smo was obsessed with music. He thrived off the country life exposed to him at a young age through artists like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, and Waylon Jennings. However, there was a rebellious spirit in his heart that needed something a little stronger. Craving an escape for the typical teenage angst, Smo found his true love in a form of music that was foreign to the bible belt in which he lived. This music was rap. The east and west coasts of the United States had a underground urban culture with their own musical sound. Smo loved the beats and the groove these artists had created. He began learning what made the music so addictive, and before long was trying his hand at writing songs himself. There was only one problem... the man did not relate to the lyrics of crime and gang life. He put pen to paper and began writing lyrics about what he knew best - country living. Without realizing it, a new genre had been born - Country Rap!
By the turn of the century Big Smo had become a skilled studio engineer and was recording local talent. In 2002 he self released his first album, Kuntry Kitchen, named after the old country store on *Yayoda Ranch* a 32 acre farm Smo inherited from his mothers side of the family , that he manifested into a prime recording facility. The album received rave reviews and Smo was on his way to becoming a local hip hop force. By 2007 he had released his sophmore album, The True South, and was looking to embark on bigger business ventures. Critics were hailing Big Smo as a hip hop pioneer, and he was ready to capitalize on his new found status. He began recording and developing new artists in the studio and embarked on learning the field of video production as well. Before long Smo was filming videos for local talent and a buzz on the streets was growing fast. The popular Tennessee rapper Haystak hired Smo to film some videos and the two instantly hit it off. Their business relationship snowballed, and soon Big Smo was hired as Haystak's hype man for live events. He quickly became the official opening act, and even landed the role of co-producer on two Haystak albums - Hard-2-Love and Came A Long Way.
In early 2010 Smo joined forces with some industry experts to form NME Lines Entertainment. The company's first release is a new Big Smo studio album, appropriately titled American Made. Songs like "My Life In A Jar," "Old Dirt Road," and "Kickin It In Tennessee" send the listener on a thrill ride through the country in an old Ford with no brakes. Guest appearances by Haystak, Jelly Roll, Lil' Wyte, and outlaw country singer Charlie Bonnet III add flavor to an already infectious slab of musical delight. If Kid Rock and Run D.M.C. had a love child on the set of Hee-Haw it would be named Big Smo. Look out world - this man cannot be stopped.